A new visitor center for the Missouri Botanical Garden will plant seeds of discovery...and support St. Louis’s blossoming culture.
The Missouri Botanical Garden has broken ground on the Jack C. Taylor Visitor Center, a project that will transform our visitors’ experience, sustain the Garden’s future, and contribute to a growing cultural renaissance in St. Louis.
The $95 million project will be funded entirely from private donations—spearheaded by the Taylor family and backed by Garden supporters.
"This project will create a new treasure for St. Louis, allowing us to advance our role as a global leader in plant science, and as an important cultural institution for the region and the nation.”
From the moment visitors pull into the parking lot, the Taylor Visitor Center will immerse them in our mission to connect people with plants and showcase the natural world.
The new entry garden will feature rare plants from around the world, a fountain, a sloped walkway, and seating among an ascending, multilayered open woodland planting.
Once inside, Garden visitors will be immediately greeted with stunning views of some of the Garden’s most iconic locations as well as a new garden and fountain to the south.
A new conservatory will house a permanent collection of Mediterranean plants.
A single desk will provide integrated information, ticket sales, membership sales, and security.
The Garden’s shop will host outdoor plant sales, and enhanced dining options will include a grab-and-go location as well as a sit-down café that will have expansive views into the Garden.
In addition to a revamped main lobby, a large function space will expand the Garden’s ability to serve the community, welcoming visitors and serving as the host site for private films, events, conferences, and educational sessions all year long.
We will remain open throughout construction.
The Next Two Years
Phase 1 January 2020–October 2020 Construction of the Event Center
Phase 2 October 2020–March 2022 Construction of the main entrance
Phase 3 March 2022–July 2022 Finishing touches
We are dedicated to continuing to serve our mission throughout the transformation process, and throughout the two-year construction, we will remain open.
“The planet is in desperate need of organizations like Missouri Botanical Garden and we believe this is a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the Garden to truly enhance its message.”
Much has changed since the Garden’s Ridgway Visitor Center opened in 1982—most notably the number of Garden visitors. The existing visitor center was designed to accommodate 250,000 visitors per year. Today the Garden welcomes nearly one million. As we look to sustain and build on that growth, the new Taylor Visitor Center will be critical to ensuring an exceptional experience for visitors at every point of the Garden.
To make this vision come to life, the Garden is collaborating with leading design firm Ayers Saint Gross and landscape architect Michael Vergason.
We’ve also made huge strides in sustainable architecture and technology since 1982. We are fully committed to deploying these advances throughout the building as we commit to the highest level of LEED certification.
President, Ayers Saint Gross
“Our family is dedicated to the growth and development of this beautiful city...and the Garden has such a deep cultural impact. We are honored to be a part of this institution and know just how critically important it is for the development of St. Louis.”
Executive Chairman, Enterprise Holdings, Inc.
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Enjoy the Garden throughout the duration of construction, consult Garden staff with your questions and view a 3D model of the new visitor center.
Every gift supports the Garden and our mission. The Taylor Visitor Center is currently 90% funded; to raise the final 10%, we need your help. Donate here.